Last week's Future Investment Initiative conference in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, was not well attended by the international money management community after several notable executives canceled their visits in the aftermath of allegations over the country's involvement in the death of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.
Organizers of the conference, touted as "Davos in the Desert," little a little more than one month ago boasted an advisory board featuring Mellody Hobson, president of Ariel Investments LLC, and Stephen A. Schwarzman, chairman, CEO and co-founder of The Blackstone Group LP. Other high-profile investors also were due to attend, including BlackRock Inc. CEO Laurence D. Fink.
Mr. Fink's planned appearance was canceled, a spokeswoman said. She declined to provide any further information.
Sheila Patel, CEO of International Goldman Sachs Asset Management and global co-head of GSAM client business, also canceled, confirmed a GSAM spokesman.
Ms. Hobson resigned from the advisory board and was not participating in the conference, a spokesman said. He also confirmed that no Ariel professionals would attend.
Mr. Schwarzman and other Blackstone professionals also did not attend, said a source familiar with the firm.
The conference website said the FII was "powered by the Public Investment Fund," Riyadh — the country's $183 billion sovereign wealth fund, according to figures by the Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute.